Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
If you run KDE, you aren't just stuck with the standard "kicker" panel to operate as your app launcher and taskbar. There are a bunch of nice panel replacements that will spice up your desktop nicely. The ones that I've used and tested are kooldock, kxdocker and the nkotb kiba-dock (NB. the only place with anything useful on that site is the forum). So, what do these docks do, and what's cool about them?
his one's been around for a while. It has basick functionality, and works well, however, when compared to the other two we're going to look at, it just doesn't that "wow" factor. It provides app launchers, and a taskbar. It will autohide, if that is required, and has a reasonable amount of configuration. You can drag and drop launcher icons from your kmenu, or manually add icons. It supports true translucency on a compiz/beryl desktop, which is nice and the animation is nice enough.
iba-dock has got all the kids talking. It is a dock much like the other docks referred to here, but is developed with xgl/aiglx in mind. But that's not the coolest part. The coolest part is that it has a physics engine built into it.